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The Hood Magazine

How to Get Your Child Ready For Kindergarten

Jun 27, 2016 07:10AM ● By Hood Magazine
By Shelly Zeibel, St. Michael Elementary

Beginning kindergarten is a huge milestone for you and your child. Cherish each and every moment with your “soon-to-be” kindergartner, as we all know, they grow up right before our very eyes. You can have fun with your child by encouraging him/her to practice the following developmental areas in preparation for kindergarten.


Language Development

  • Give one/two step directions.
  • Read! Read! Read! You can never read too much, but try for at least 20 minutes a day.
  • Give your child plenty of opportunities to draw, paint and just be creative.
  • Teach uppercase/lowercase letters and sounds through play and games.

Social/Emotional Development

  • Play board games/practice taking turns.
  • Have play dates.
  • Encourage your child to clean up after play.
  • Spend time with someone other than mom and dad.

Cognitive Development

  • Go on a shape hunt. Look for things that are shaped like circles, squares, rectangles and triangles.
  • Talk about positional terms (up/down) (over/under) (top/bottom).
  • Practice opposites (big/little) (slow/fast) (hot/cold).
  • Count to 20.
    • -Count objects in your house.
    • -Count the steps you go up and down.
  • Recognize/write numbers 1-10
  • Make patterns (red, yellow, red, yellow).
  • Sort household objects by color, size and shape (laundry, silverware, blocks).
  • Learn colors (red, yellow, blue, green, orange, purple, brown, black, white and pink).

Physical Development

Extra physical activity means better sleep, so keep your child active through gross motor activities.

  • Have unstructured outdoor playtime, incorporate running, jumping and climbing.
  • Play catch.
  • Practice skipping and galloping.
  • Practice balancing.

Be sure to include fine motor activities as well.

  • Cut with scissors.
  • Stack blocks.
  • String beads.
  • Put puzzles together.
  • Play and create with play dough.
  • Writing a name (The first letter should be capitalized and the remaining letters should be lowercase. Letters should be written from top to bottom).
  • Work on using the correct pencil grip.

Children want to feel needed. Help your child become independent and responsible by giving him/her simple jobs around the house (making the bed, clearing dishes from the table, cleaning up toys).


Give yourself a pat on the back, and be sure to enjoy each new accomplishment and experience you encounter with your child. Kindergarten is sure to be a very special and memorable time in the lives of you and your child!
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